The time has come for the Modi government to separate the wheat from chaff by incentivising deserving senior officials.
More than 20 years after the recommendation of the Kargil Review Committee on higher defence management, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the decision to create the post of Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) during his August 15, 2019, Independence Day speech from the Red Fort. The decision was not so simple as many within the defence establishment were opposed to the idea of concentrating military decision-making in one person. Yet, PM Modi followed the letter and spirit of the 1999 Kargil Committee and appointed General Bipin Rawat as the first CDS for three years on January 1, 2020. He was also made Secretary of the newly-created Department of Military Affairs (DMA) and tasked with delivering on military reforms through transparent need-based hardware acquisition and creation of theatre commands for better synergy among the land, air and sea-based forces. The idea was to cut through bureaucratic red-tape and speed up decision-making in the defence ministry. The kind of red-tape that led the government to hold back approvals to let troops posted in Siachen get access to snow scooters. It was eventually approved, but only after former defence minister George Fernandes ordered the two babus who had blocked the purchase to visit Siachen to see firsthand why the scooters were needed.
News Source : Hindustan Times